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Roasted Acorn Squash with Jalapeño-Lime Vinaigrette and Black Rice

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Are you looking for a recipe for Roasted Acorn Squash? This recipe roasts the squash, but then finishes them in a most unexpected, and delicious way! You top it with a zesty, flavorful Chile-Lime Vinaigrette that brings their flavor to life. I started off thinking acorn squash were just a decoration for your home at Thanksgiving, but now, I’m a true believer in their delicousness! 

Roasted Acorn Squash with Chile-Lime Vinaigrette on Black Rice

A Vegetarian’s Delight: Roasted Acorn Squash with Chile Lime Vinaigrette on Black Rice

We Decided To Eat More Veggies!

In my determination to eat more veggies, and to buy local produce whenever possible,  I joined a Community Supported Agriculture group (a CSA).  And each time my CSA  basket arrives, it is filled with veritable vegetable treasures.

But to be perfectly candid, sometimes I am completely without a clue as to WHAT to do with some of the “treasures” they send me. Makes them a little more of the “hidden treasure” variety of treasure, I guess.

And so, last fall, the cry went up from my kitchen:

“What the Heck Do I Do with an Acorn Squash???!!!”

My old answer to that question was to let them sit in a bowl that held all kinds of fall gourds and squashes as Thanksgiving decorations, until they molded.

But I wanted to be a Reformed Squash-Waster! I was determined to learn how to cook something I’d never eaten before. Something I honestly had a few doubts as to whether or not it COULD be eaten.

What Does An Acorn Squash Look Like?

It looks like a large, pleated acorn, and is about the size of a grapefruit. Some of them are orange, and some of them are dark green. They look very “fall-ish”. But eat them? Well, yes: not only do I now eat them, you could go as far as to say that I now love them!

And (hold on to your hats, because this is going to shock you) my kids love them, too. My whole family loves them! It’s my little Harvest Miracle. Black Rice

What is Black Rice, And Do I Have to Use it For This Recipe?

Black Rice, as you can see, is not really black. It has that deep purple hue of the black bean. Scientists tell us that the more natural pigment there is in our food, the higher the antioxidant level, so the greater the nutrients. And black rice is delicious, as well as beautiful. 

Black Rice and Acorn Squash

I love this picture, because you can see how pretty the skin of the Acorn Squash is.
Yes, you eat the skin, too!

You do NOT have to use black rice for this recipe. I used it because I found it at Costco, and was curious about it. Especially since it was labeled as Forbidden Rice. Who doesn’t want to try Forbidden Rice? Brown rice, or quinoa, or farro would all be nice substitutes for black rice.

The Overview for Roasted Acorn Squash with Chile-Lime Vinaigrette

Here’s the overview for this recipe, and it couldn’t be more simple. Basically, I slice them, scoop out the seeds, and roast them. While they’re roasting, I cook a pot of black rice (which I find at Costco), and drizzle it all with  a vinaigrette at the end. TA-DAH! For color, you can add some craisins. For crunch, you can add some pine nuts. They’re nice additions, but totally unnecessary. It’s gilding the lily. Or the acorn squash. As the case may be.

Roasted Acorn Squash with Black Rice

Drizzling the Chile-Lime Vinaigrette over the Roasted Acorn Squash.

Roasted Acorn Squash with Chile Lime Vinaigrette on Black Rice

Please: pin this on Pinterest!

You need to pin this recipe, because you will LOVE it!

Yield: 4 servings

Roasted Acorn Squash with Jalapeño-Lime Vinaigrette and Black Rice

Roasted Acorn Squash on Black Rice with Chile-Lime Vinaigrette

A delicious fall or winter vegetarian meal of roasted acorn squash, brightened with a chile-lime vinaigrette.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes


  • 2 (approximately 1 and 1/2 lb.) acorn squash
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 c. + 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon. lime zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced jalapeno
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons craisins (optional)
  • 2 c. black rice
  • pinch of salt


  1. FOR THE SQUASH: Preheat oven to 450º.
  2. Halve squash lengthwise, and cut off and discard stems.
  3. Scoop out seeds and slice squash into wedges that are approximately 3/4" thick.
  4. Place squash in a large bowl, and toss squash with freshly ground black pepper, 3/4 of a teaspoon of salt, and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
  5. Arrange the squash slices on a rimmed baking sheet so that they are not touching (use 2 baking sheets if necessary).
  6. Roast until squash is tender, and undersides of squash are golden.
  7. FOR THE RICE: While the squash is roasting, cook the black rice according to the package directions. My package called for 3 1/2 c. of water for 2 c. of rice, plus a pinch of salt, brought to a boil, then reduced to simmer for 30 minutes.
  8. FOR THE VINAIGRETTE: Mash the minced garlic into a paste, by sprinkling it with 1/4 t. coarse grained salt, and running your chef's knife over it again and again. I use not only the sharp edge of the blade, but also the side of the knife to squish the garlic with the salt crystals, making it juicy and like a paste. Transfer this paste to a small bowl, and whisk in the lime juice, jalapeño, cilantro and remaining 1/4 c. of oil, until combined.
  9. To plate, use the black rice as a base, transfer squash, browned side up, onto rice, drizzle with vinaigrette, and sprinkle with craisins and toasted pine nuts, if desired.


To toast the pine nuts, I place them in a small sauté pan, place it over a medium heat on the stove, and watch them like a hawk, stirring every now and again, and watching their color. Pine nuts will burn quickly: only a few seconds can cause them to go black, so use your eyes and your nose, and when you have the color you like, dump them out of the pan and onto a saucer, to keep them from becoming overly browned. Depending on your pan, and the heat, this only takes 2-4 minute

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 220Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 564mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 1gSugar: 5gProtein: 3g

I’d be delighted to have you share this, and even more delighted if you pin it on Pinterest. And of course, I’d love to know if you’ve ever made acorn squash before, and how you do yours.   If you’re interested in squash recipes, I have another wonderful recipe for Roasted Buttercup Squash with Bacon and Hot Honey!  

Christi P

Thursday 9th of October 2014

Where has this been all my life?


Thursday 9th of October 2014

I'm trying the recipe tonight and guess what? I found black rice at an organic market today! yay!


Sunday 5th of October 2014

When I first saw this recipe I thought it was rice and black BEANS. Now I see its black rice. Wonder how it would be with half and half black beans and black rice?

At any rate, I had to laugh when I read the blog post. The reason I'm looking for a recipe is because I joined a CSA this summer/fall and got acorn squash in my box!

Grown and Flown

Monday 20th of January 2014

Susan, this looks wonderful - hoping to try it out and will let you know how it goes. Thanks! My recent post During Pet Therapy, My Dog Does the Talking


Saturday 18th of January 2014

Black rice! I have a big bag of black rice in my pantry. I am looking for ways to serve it. I bet your vinaigrette is delicious over the rice.

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